Dungaw: Re-imagined Religious Expression in Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic

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Expressions of religious piety have been practiced in the Catholic Church as a response to plagues and pandemics. The faithful seek comfort in prayer and appeal to God and the saints for mercy and protection from illness and loss of life. In the Philippines, the veneration of sacred images and placing them outside the window of a house or a church is a religious expression known as "dungaw” (to look out). This paper discusses “dungaw” as a faith-response of Filipino Catholics during the COVID-19 pandemic. The study is an empirical phenomenology that consists of a literary review and interviews. This paper analyzed the significance of the religious expression “dungaw.” Four areas of inquiry were identified: (1) Views on the COVID-19 pandemic, (2) “Dungaw” and prayer life during the pandemic, (3) “Dungaw” as a religious expression, and (4) “Dungaw” and communal life. Results showed that Filipino Catholics utilized religion as a coping resource during turbulent times. Filipino Catholics also embodied traditional values to help repair the frayed social fabric during COVID-19.


College of Liberal Arts


Theology and Religious Education

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Digitial Object Identifier (DOI)


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